The Pajama Club will play a very special show at Sydney’s Oxford Arts Factory on March 14.

Fans might notice that Alana Skyring is absent from the band photo. That’s because she’s decided to leave the music industry to pursue her dream of becoming one of New York’s best bakers.

Not to worry though, because Neil and Sharron Finn’s kids Liam and Elroy will take a break from their own musical careers to appear alongside their mum and dad at the show. It’s the same Pajama Club you love with an added dose of Finn-ness!

Tickets are available now from Moshtix.

Image used with permission from Two Fish Out of Water

With their trumpet, banjo, ukulele, and a thrumming double bass, Flap! creates a big nostalgic sound which takes us back to the 1920s. The Victorian jazz quartet will release their sophomore album A Great Day for the Race in April.

The lead single “Rock in Space” is an irresistible toe-tapper with dreamy vocals and a gorgeous speakeasy feel to it. It sets the scene for an album which breaks the mould.

Flap! will be busy this year, with A Great Day for the Race’s release backed by a national tour followed by a three-month stint in Europe. However before all that they’ll treat their local audiences to two very special album pre-release shows. Victorians can catch them at Ruby’s Lounge in Belgrave tomorrow night, followed by a show at Northcote’s Regal Ballroom on Friday. Be there or be square!

Image used with permission from Heapsaflash

Skypilot have impressed me again with their second single “Anonymous,” the follow-up to “Harold (You Sold Your Brother Down).

It’s another anthemic slice of rock from the Brisbane band, but there’s more to it than simply a great sound. I love the intelligence of Skypilot’s approach to music making, the lyrics that talk about really meaty topics. In this case the band is reflecting on the dichotomy between loneliness and connection in the modern world.

“Despite the advent of the internet and social networking, today’s world can still be a lonely place,” explained the band’s bassist and keyboard player, Dan Lane. “All of us may be lost but we’re not alone. As long as one other person in the world knows our name, we’re not anonymous.”

I love everything I’m hearing from this band, and I can’t wait to hear more when Skypilot’s debut EP drops in March.Until then we can all enjoy a free download of “Anonymous” at Skypilot’s Bandcamp page.

It’s been some time since Blueju!ce burst onto the airwaves with “Broken Leg.” But now they’re back with a brand new album called Company, and a national tour in the works.

Company was released late last year to relatively little fanfare, but it has the critics buzzing. Its high energy pop tunes should easily translate to the stage. Hopefully this tour will encourage more people to listen to the disc that many believe is the band’s best and most consistent. If you still haven’t snagged the album you can purchase a digital version for just $10 when you bundle it with your concert tickets.

Young music lovers should note that Blueju!ce have announced some all ages and under 18s gigs for the very first time. If you’ve always wanted to see Blueju!ce kids, this is your chance!

Tickets for the following shows are available now from the usual outlets.

12 April 2012 – Waves, Wollongong
13 April 2012 – The Metro Theatre, Sydney (All Ages)
14 April 2012 – Hi-Fi, Brisbane
19 April 2012 – Settlers Tavern, Margaret River
20 April 2012 – The Capitol, Perth
21 April 2012 – The Gov, Adelaide (All Ages)
26 April 2012 – Eureka Hotel, Geelong
27 April 2012 – Pelly Bar @ Pier Live, Frankston
28 April 2012 – Hi-Fi, Melbourne (Under 18s @ 2 pm)
28 April 2012 – Hi-Fi, Melbourne (18+ @ 8 pm)

Image used with permission from Heapsaflash

Australian expat Kitty Clementine is generating some serious buzz on the eve of the American release of her self-titled debut album.

While she’ll always call Australia home, the Sydney Conservatorium of Music graduate is now based in New Orleans. She arrived with little money and no plans beyond soaking up the country and using it as fuel for her first record. She hitchhiked through Alabama, North Carolina, Seattle, San Francisco, and finally Los Angeles where she laid down an album in just seven days.

Kitty’s music reminds me a bit of Duffy’s, but there’s even more of an edge which is so unique. “Blow My Horn” is the first single to come from the album, which hits American record stores tomorrow. Hopefully an Australian release isn’t too far off. It’d be a shame for America to enjoy all the fun of this homegrown act!

Enigmatic Melbourne musician Chet Faker is easing us into our working week with his soulful new single “Terms and Conditions.”

It’s a bit of a slow burner, but once it hooks you it just doesn’t let go. The song is our first taste of Chet’s debut EP Thinking in Textures, which will hit stores in late March.

Chet Faker honed his craft in Melbourne’s disco and house scene, but has developed his sound to include more acoustic elements and intimate lyrics. He hides behind a bushy beard and an alias, but those words reveal plenty about who Chet Faker is.

Thinking in Textures is slated for a March release in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. With all those distribution deals, this unassuming musician might just be our next big global star.

Image used with permission from Remote Control Records

Britain’s acclaimed classical vocal quartet The Hilliard Ensemble is teaming up with our own Australian Chamber Orchestra for a very special Aussie tour.

The Hilliard Ensemble have sold millions of albums around the world to fans attracted to their unique take on sacred tunes like Gregorian chants and medieval hymns. Helena Rathbone, the Australian Chamber Orchestra’s principal second violin, says the show takes the audience “into three wonderful sound worlds: the sublimely intimate a capella of four solo voices and the chamber music collaboration of voices and strings, beautifully bookended with some of the most gorgeously lush string music.” The show’s centrepiece is Raskatov’s “Obikhod,” a Russian orthodox chant written by the Russian-German composer especially for these performances.

It sounds like a real treat for classical music fans. Tickets are on sale now for the following shows.

10 March 2012 – Llewellyn Hall @ ANU, Canberra
11 March 2012 – Sydney Opera House, Sydney
12 March 2012 – QPAC Concert Hall, Brisbane
13 March 2012 – Town Hall, Adelaide
17 March 2012 – City Recital Hall Angel Place, Sydney
18 & 19 March 2012 – Town Hall, Melbourne
20 & 21 March 2012 – City Recital Hall Angel Place, Sydney
22 March 2012 – Town Hall, Wollongong

Image source: Friedrun Reinhold/The Hilliard Ensemble website

Over the last 12 years, Roots Manuva has established himself as one of the world’s true icons of urban music. He’ll return to Australia next month to play the Playground Weekender and Golden Plains Festivals, as well as a string of sideshows.

He’ll treat fans to tunes from his brand new album 4everevolution, as well as the classic numbers that made him such a legend. 4everevolution sees Roots Manuva exploring new genres like dubstep and funky. It’s something new from the reggae lover, but with full band in tow I expect fans will warm to this brand new sound. After so many years in the business, I suppose you’ve got to keep evolving to remain relevant!

Roots Manuva will play the following Australian shows next month.

4 March 2012 – Playground Weekender Festival, Wiseman’s Ferry
8 March 2012 – The Hi-Fi, Sydney
9 March 2012 – The Hi-Fi, Brisbane
10 March 2012 – Prince Bandroom, Melbourne
11 March 2012 – Golden Plains Festival, Meredith

Image used with permission from Niche Productions

“Magic” is a pretty appropriate title for the new single from Sydney-based electro act Panama.

The band is led by Jarrah McCleary, a classically-trained pianist from the Northern Territory. His training anchors the quartet’s sound, which pays tribute to the dance acts of the 80s. This song has a gorgeous tropical feel which conjures up the summer heat none of us have quite had this year. There’s a dance remix, but I prefer the song in its purest form.

Panama release “Magic” digitally on March 2.

American soul singer Charles Bradley is looking to woo local music fans when he brings his unique gravelly rasp to our shores next month.

The man known as The Screaming Eagle of Soul put in the hard yards before releasing his debut album No Time for Dreamers last year. He spent decades working as a labourer in a string of seasonal jobs, making enough money to allow him to pursue his passion for song. No Time for Dreaming is the culmination of that passion; you can hear it in every note sung in his unmistakable raw timbre.

You can experience Charles’ distinctive brand of soul at the following shows next month.

10 March 2012 – The Hi-Fi, Melbourne
12 March 2012 – The Powerhouse, Brisbane
16 March, 2012 – The Factory, Sydney
18 March 2012 – Corner Hotel, Melbourne

Image used with permission from Niche Productions